The South African non-profit civil society sector plays a significant role in helping the South African government fulfill its constitutional mandate. The Gift of the givers is one organisation that has been influential and active in many disaster stricken areas, both locally and abroad, but The Gift of the Givers is more than just a disaster response agency, boasting more than 21 different categories of projects. They include entrepreneurial, bursaries, education, water wealth, agriculture and sustainability to name just a few.
Founded by Dr Imtiaz Sooliman in 1992 as a spiritual calling, The Gift of The Givers is a proudly South African organization that has a global footprint having delivered lifesaving aid in the form of Search and Rescue teams, medical personnel, medical equipment, medical supplies, medicines, vaccines, anti-malarial medication, high energy and protein supplements, food and water to millions of people in 41 countries, South Africa included, dispersing in excess of R1.4 billion in aid to needy individuals and communities over the past 24 years. All relief aid and operational costs are generated through donations from corporates and the public.
Gift of the Givers is the largest disaster response NGO of African origin on the African continent and has earned 103 individual and organisational accolades and awards, including 4 Presidential awards to date. It is no wonder, as the organisation invented the world’s first and only containerised mobile hospital, commissioned Africa’s largest Open Source Computer Lab, established the world’s first containerised mobile primary health care unit and developed the world’s first groundnut-soya high energy protein supplement, used for severe Malnutrition, HIV/AIDS, TB, Cancer and other debilitating conditions.
Their eThekwini Jump Start schools entrepreneurial programme has empowered many young entrepreneurs through the support of the organisation. Today, some of these young start-up business owners have employed additional staff, while others have even opened other businesses, creating further employment opportunities.
The expertise of The Gift of the Givers extends to construction, with their own design for a prototype house used in both Khayelitsha post the 2013 fires and Alexandra after recurring flooding of the Jukskei River. The materials used for this prototype house are fire resistant and offer superb seasonal insulation.